SOURCE: Autism Speaks

Autism Speaks

October 19, 2015 09:00 ET

Autism Speaks Launches the House to Home Prize

$150,000 in Prizes for Breakthrough Ideas in Housing for Adults With Autism

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - October 19, 2015) - Autism Speaks, the world's leading autism science and advocacy organization, is seeking creative ideas to develop alternative housing and support services for the growing number of adults with autism spectrum disorder. To attract innovative solutions, the organization today announced a unique challenge: the Autism Speaks House to Home Prize. The total prize purse is $150,000. The competition will be managed and applications are available through the HeroX incentive prize platform.

Currently, 81 percent of adults with autism live at home with their parents because there are few other options. Many people with autism need some level of support to live as independently as possible, but their needs vary widely.

Housing "solutions" encompass more than a physical place to live; a true housing solution encompasses many aspects of life, such as community integration, personal safety, and access to employment opportunities and public transportation.

Autism Speaks is encouraging problem-solvers worldwide to develop revolutionary solutions. This breakthrough must include the supports necessary to safely live outside of the family home, and it may come in the form of technology, architectural design, strategic partnerships, community services, new business models, or any combination of these or countless other ideas. Any creative solution is welcome, whether or not the applicant has the ability to make it happen.

"Adults with autism deserve the same opportunities as their peers to live as independently as possible," said Lisa Goring, Autism Speaks' executive vice president of programs and services. "Autism Speaks is hoping this prize leads to innovative solutions to support people on the spectrum of all ages and abilities so they can live fulfilling and productive lives."

Autism Speaks will offer three prizes for three separate solutions:

  • Home and residential support solutions for individuals who require 24/7 support
  • Home and residential support solutions for individuals who require daily support
  • Home and residential support solutions for individuals who require weekly support (a few times per week, but not every day)

The best original idea in each category will receive a $50,000 prize. Entrants may submit their solutions as written proposals, photos, drawings, comparative examples, business plan outlines and/or other digital media. The submission deadline is March 1, 2016. Judges will include people with autism, thought leaders in the field, industry experts and parents.

To learn more, go to http://heroX.com/HouseToHomePrize.

About Autism

Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders -- autism spectrum disorders -- caused by a combination of genes and environmental influences. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by communication difficulties, social and behavioral challenges, and repetitive behaviors. An estimated 1 in 68 children in the U.S. is on the autism spectrum.

About Autism Speaks

Autism Speaks is the world's leading autism science and advocacy organization. It is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. Autism Speaks was founded in February 2005 by Suzanne and Bob Wright, the grandparents of a child with autism. Mr. Wright is the former vice chairman of General Electric and chief executive officer of NBC and NBC Universal. Since its inception, Autism Speaks has committed $560 million to its mission, the majority in science and medical research. Each year, Walk Now for Autism Speaks events are held in nearly 100 cities across North America. On the global front, Autism Speaks has established partnerships in more than 70 countries on five continents to foster international research, services and awareness. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit AutismSpeaks.org.

About HeroX

A spinoff from XPRIZE and founded in 2013, HeroX exists at the intersection of crowdsourcing, competition and collaboration, using each to drive positive change. A suite of tools and services to help spark and build awareness for new solutions to social and economic challenges, the HeroX incentive prize platform connects funding companies and individuals with problem solvers. HeroX.com

Twitter: @Iamherox

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